Assessing the role of neighbourhoods in the school readiness of kindergarten children in British Columbia

Research has documented that a child’s immediate surroundings affect early development. Neighborhood variables such as socioeconomic status, cohesion, safety, and access to community resources (e.g. childcare, libraries) are amongst those factors that can affect child health and development. However, there is little Canadian research that addresses this connection. Vanessa Lapointe wants to fill that gap by studying how neighbourhood conditions affect the developmental health of British Columbian kindergarten children across five developmental categories: physical health and well-being; social competence; emotional maturity; language and cognitive development; and communication skills and general knowledge. This research will be helpful in designing early intervention programs to assist children who may otherwise lack the developmental foundation needed to be successful as they begin school.